US official meets Cypriot leaders

US Assistant Secretary of State Philip Gordon had talks Jan 20 with Greek Cypriot leader Dimitris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Derviş Eroğlu to appraise long-running reunification talks, just days ahead of key Geneva talks under UN mediation. At a Jan 18 press briefing, US State Department spokesman Philip Crowley said Gordon’s trip is an opportunity to speak directly to the leaders of the two communities and their advisors. Eroğlu and Christofias are currently discussing the most thorny issue in the peace talks, the property issue, which observers believe would push forward the talks if a breakthrough in this particular topic is achieved.

The U.S. is not a significant factor in either the bi-lateral negotiations between the Cypriot leaders nor the tri-lateral talks involving Northern and Southern Cyprus and the UN. Many observers believe the Geneva talks are the last chance before the situation once again becomes ossified by Greek Cypriot elections in May and Turkey’s general elections in June.

Source: Today’s Zaman

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